Škuc Gallery

Škuc Gallery has occupied the premises at 21 Stari trg in Ljubljana since 1978. It is a part of the ŠKUC association, which has been one of the pillars of non-profit culture in Slovenia. Over thirty years, Škuc Gallery has developed into an international artistic venue for exhibitions, various art events, publishing and documentation. At the end of the 1970s, the opening of the exhibition venue came as a response to the mainstream exhibition policy of the established national galleries and art institutions in Slovenia. This was the result of the work of Taja Vidmar Brejc, an art historian and curator, and the first artistic director of Škuc Gallery. The first exhibition in the new gallery was a retrospective of the OHO group. Under new artistic directors in the 1980s, (Dušan Mandić, Marina Gržinić, Barbara Borčić) Škuc Gallery became a centre of Slovenian (sub)culture, taking an even more radical position toward institutional culture. In this period, there were many multimedia projects, presentations of Zagreb and Belgrade conceptual movements (eg. Raša Todosijević, Mladen Stilinović, Goran Ðorđević) and the first projects of the now established Slovenian visual artists and collectives (IRWIN, V.S.S.D., Bojana Gorenc and Marjetica Potrč). At the turn of the decade, under Tomislav Vignjević and Alenka Pirman, the gallery had to confront its own history and its reputation as an elitist alternative space. Annual programme selections came to include various artistic positions and focused on the following: the first solo exhibitions of young Slovenian artists; solo exhibitions or outside projects of established Slovenian artists; solo exhibitions or outside projects of foreign artists; thematic group exhibitions by guest curators and socio-cultural documentary exhibitions. In 1996, Gregor Podnar became the artistic director and ran the gallery until June 2003, when Alenka Gregorič took over. Since October 2009, the artistic director responsible for the programme has been Tevž Logar, who will continue some established programme guidelines, while introducing some innovations. Annual exhibition programme is a primary focus of Škuc Gallery what results in realization of ten to twelve exhibition projects per year. In recent years, the Gallery's programme (which is funded from the public funds) has relied mainly on integrating various segments and conceptual guidelines set by the Artistic Director, focusing mostly on artists and artistic practices that are dealing with social and geo-political issues within contemporary society - oriented especially to the context of the »Former East« but slowly, step by step trying to put it in the dialogue with the West. Although the programme is mostly based on contemporary visual art, we seek to complement it as well with projects of new media art and other contemporary artistic practices (performance, sound art, discursive projects,…). The aim of the exhibition programme is as well to catch a balance between local and international presentations since that is very important for reflection within the cultural that gallery operates. The conceptual guidelines and orientation of the exhibition programme can be divided in different contextual segments which are the backbone for forming the programme on annual level but always in connection to actual trends / problems within contemporary visual art. Through selection of already realized exhibition projects that are mentioned in the text these particular segments are carried out and explained.

In the last ten years, Škuc Gallery has become one of the most visited exhibition premises in Slovenia, with some 1,000 visitors on average per exhibition. The focus on regional and local developments represents a significant segment of the Gallery's programme but at the same time the involvement in the international cultural industry has become a growing part of the daily routine. We have decided to establish a closer co-operation with institutions and individuals working in the region including art centres in Austria, Croatia, Hungary and Italy, that provides a wider theoretical framework of our curatorial work. Škuc Gallery has developed into an art production centre and since 2000 it has also started to represent its artists at international art fairs.
During the last few years, the following internationally working artists were presented in the Gallery: Ingold Airlines, Rasheed Araeen, Jože Barši, Raimond Chaves, Attila Csörgő, Tacita Dean, Leif Elggren, Olafur Eliasson, Vadim Fishkin, Carl Michael von Hausswolff, IRWIN, Žiga Kariž, Antal Lakner, Juri Leiderman, Maja Licul, M+M, Olaf Nicolai, Cesare Pietroiusti, Tadej Pogačar, Marko Peljhan, Goran Petercol, Marjetica Potrč, Mladen Stilinović, Nebojša Šerič-Šoba, Nika Špan, Apolonija Šušteršič, Elulalia Valldosera, Sislej Xhafa, and others.

In future Škuc Gallery does not wish to focus merely on individual collaborations and will continue to actively cooperate with international institutions and centres of production. By doing so, Škuc Gallery does not only help bring international art production to Slovene exhibition spaces but also translates its own particular identity and activity into international context. It is for that reason that participating in numerous, mostly European art fairs presents one of the most significant aspects of gallery's activities. For the last ten years Škuc Gallery has been actively taking part in contemporary art fairs, which have become a phenomenon of the art system in the last couple of decades, presenting themselves as multipurpose spaces of exhibiting, networking and reflecting contemporary art production. In the first decade of its presentations at contemporary art fairs, Škuc Gallery took part in: : Liste 02 in 03 in Basel, Art Forumu in Berlin (2002, 2003, 2010), Artissima Turin (2004 and 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011), ARCO Madrid (2005 and 2006), Art Brussels (2007, 2008, 2009, 2010), Viennafair Vienna (2006 – 2011), and VOLTA NY and Basel (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011).

In more than thirty years Škuc Gallery hosted numerous solo and group exhibitions, organised lectures and presentations by renowned artists, curators and theoreticians, and published several publications about contemporary visual arts. The gallery’s history and its connections with local and international centres of contemporary visual production constitute a solid platform for the development of the exhibition programme in the future. As always, and despite the current hyper-production, Škuc Gallery will endeavour to follow trends in contemporary visual art, while preserving the identity of the exhibition space and upholding its programme guidelines, even though, because of the cultural and funding politics in which it functions is forced to produce more than it is able to self-reflect . We therefore hope that, in the midst of this fast-paced world, Škuc Gallery will provide a place where a person – whether a person which works within the gallery or a visitor – can find the tranquillity to stop and think, and find in art what they are looking for.

Phone: + 386 1 251 65 40
Fax: + 386 1 421 31 40